Interpretation of Emily Dickinson's Poem 341

Interpretation of Emily Dickinson
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Interpretation of Emily Dickinson's poem 341 Today Emily Dickinson is recognized as one of America’s greatest poets. During his life in 19th century New England, however, she lived a life of reclusion and relative obscurity. Indeed, although Dickinson was a highly prolific writer a very small amount of her poems were published during her lifetime and when it was published editors significantly altered her work.


While Emily Dickson’s poem 341 outwardly explores the feeling of winter one recognizes that the work has a much more profound undertone. Dickinson begins the en-media-race and it is not until towards the end of the work that the reader gains full contextual recognition for the narrative. Consider the poem as it opens, “After great pain, a formal feeling comes -- The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs” (Dickinson, 1-2). Implementing these as the opening lines of the poem immediately throes the reader into Dickinson’s deliberation on death and mourning. As the poem advances Dickinson further establishes the exploration of these emotions that occur ‘after great pain’. While it would be easy to simply attribute the poem’s central focus to the exploration of mourning it seems that to a degree this may be too broad a description and instead Dickinson has succeeded in articulating an element of the human experience that has otherwise existed on the interstices of feeling and linguistic articulation. ...
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